DIY Carnival Costume

As I’m sure you know by now I’m a carnival junkie. Sometimes I play mas with a band, other times I just storm (hijack) a band. Designing my own costume has been on my bucket list, so a lil bit after Trinidad carnival I decided to take a stab at it.  It's kind of a Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome inspired look that I shall rock at my next carnival.  I’m designing one for my homie too so I guess it’s nice that I won’t be alone.  My other chica is wearing her Trinidad carnival costume that she didn’t get to utilize because she had to cancel her trip for work, so it will be 3 misfits doing their own dayyym thing.

Well here it is… kinda sorta. I’m still crafting arm pieces, something for the head (not a feathered headpiece cause im pretty sure I'm good on feathers), necklace, & other finishing touches, but I don’t feel like working on this anymore for now.  I have a new found respect for costume designers, it’s not easy… so many intricate details.  I can only imagine having to produce these in bulk. Last term I did a group project against globalization and one thing I spoke againt is “Sweat Shops” but if I had my own mas band and had to produce hundreds of costumes I would be on the phone with a sweat shop asking, “How Much?”  *hangs head in shame*

Sorry no booty shot cause my booty is no cutie!  And I didn’t do a head to toe pic because my hair was in Unabomber mode & my knees were mega ashy.  But the back is similar to the front except it has the zebra cloth (like the bra) that goes slightly past the feathered triangle.  Can't be flashing my no cutie booty to the world.

So here is how I did it and I know I'm going to sound really bootleg to the professional designers, but I didn’t have customers to please so I just did whatever I thought would work.  I started with a plain grey bra, semi sheer zebra fabric from Hancock Fabrics, a couple sheets of felt paper (yes felt paper lolol) & lots of bling from Michaels Crafts.  Michaels has an app that gives u 50% one regular price item so I literally went to Michaels everyday on my lunch break & everything that wasn’t already on sale I bought one at a time. muahahaha Gotta save that $$$ for bottles of Facundo (Bacardi).  I glued 2 sheets of felt together to make it a lil more durable. I cut a big triangle with a slightly square bottom for the belt and for the shoulder pieces I kept the rectangle shape.  Then I basically glued a lot of fabric, feather, beads and sparkles to my bra & belt and TAH-DAH!!! 
I hope it doesn’t look too "Home Made" I didn’t really invest a lot of time in the design process, I basically had a vision & winged it. But my vision isn’t complete; I think the finished product will be bad azz on the road.   Any who, I decided to take a stroll down memory lane to carnivals past... below are some of my carnival thru the years pix.  In costume, in a t-shirt section, not in a band at all, & times I decided to toss the headpiece.


  1. Damn Girly, you did a great job!!!

  2. Have you ever played mas at Panama carnival? I'm gonna be living there for the next 8 months and wanna play mas cos I did it at Notting Hill carnival but have no idea how to go about it. Thanks!

    1. Havent done Panama carnival since I was a kid, its far too traditional for me. Its also the same time as Trinidad carnival so I go there every year instead.

  3. LMBO @ I went to Michael's everyday! Great post!